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What Muscles Does Kettlebell Swing Use

Kettle bell swings were introduced to the US by Russian fitness expert Pavel Tsatsouline at the turn of the 21st Century. Since their introduction, Russian kettle bells have become a familiar sight in many gyms and a popular choice for home workouts.

author
Elaine Sutton
• Wednesday, 18 November, 2020
• 5 min read
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They also come in a wide range of weights, which means that you can use them at any stage of your fitness journey and can benefit whether you’re an experienced or novice user. If you’re looking for a single piece of fitness equipment that promotes a full body workout, then kettle bells are a great choice, and the kettlebellswing is the most effective exercise.

But the question on many people’s lips is, “what muscles do kettle bell swings work?”, and that’s what I want to answer in this post. The two-handed swing uses the hamstrings, glutes, quads, hips, core, back, trapezium, shoulders, and forearms.

The intensity means that you will feel the burn after a decent set, and with a good 30-minute workout you will be sweating profusely, your heart will be pumping faster, and oxygenated blood will be coursing through your veins. As long as you maintain good form, you don’t have to use a heavy bell, especially for cardio training.

As the kettle bell descends from the swing, gravity ensures that the bell will feel a lot heavier, especially as you reach the end of your set. As with any exercise, but perhaps more so with a full-body kettle swing workout, good form is vital to ensure the best results.

When performing the swing, all your weight should be placed on the heel and middle of the foot and should never transfer to the toes. You should also keep your neck and head in alignment with your back so ensure that you are always looking ahead at the horizon while performing this movement.

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The height you raise the kettle bell will be determined by the amount of power you can muster from your hip thrust. The number of reps and sets you need to perform depends on your fitness level, what you’re trying to achieve, and the weight you’re using.

Kettle bell swings are a full body workout, and whether you are training increasing strength or stamina, or even to lose weight, research suggests that shorter sessions are more effective. They utilize virtually every muscle in the body, and they are effective for weight loss as well as explosive strength training.

They also require very little equipment, and the intensity of the workout can be increased so that you continue to make the gains you’re looking for. Few exercises work almost every major muscle in your body to develop strength, power and balance together.

The posterior chain is a network of muscles and fascia that extends from your calves and hamstrings into your buttocks and lower back. In a study published in the January 2012 issue of “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research,” researchers Dr. Stuart McGill and Leigh Marshall found that the hip-hinge movement of the swing causes your lower back and buttocks to undergo an activation and relaxation cycle during the movement.

As you breathe and swing, your core is constantly activated throughout the exercise, which includes your transverses abdominal, external and internal obliques, multimedia and diaphragm. The core works with the posterior chain to stabilize your torso and control the rate and direction of the downward swing phase.

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These muscles stabilize the scapulae in order to control the swing without injuring your arms or shoulders, just like in a dead lift exercise. This temporary tension, called a lockout, is where your buttocks, thighs and abs are tightened and your shoulder blades are pulled back and depressed when you swing upward.

Muscles Worked With Kettle bell Swings kettlebellswing is primarily used for its cardio effect which is great for weight loss, hence, it’s such a popular kettle bell exercise. The kettlebellswing is a full-body exercise that uses muscles for grip, posture, stabilization, to keep the spine erect, and the actual movement (prime movers).

Grip Posture/shoulders Spine Prime movers Overhead Flexion and stabilization Gluteus Maximus (13) Bicep memoirs (long head) (14) Semitendinosus (15) Semimembranosus (16)

Truth be told, there are plenty more muscles used during the kettlebellswing but I’ve tried to stick to the most common and known ones, I also categorized them a bit differently than normal. If your grip has no endurance then you won’t be completing high reps unbroken.

Throughout the swing, your erector spinal muscles need to work to keep your spine erect, and there is actually a lot more going on inside as well to protect the spine and brace the abs. These are the muscles that create the movement which is the hip and knee extension only when we’re talking about the conventional kettlebellswing.

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These are the muscles responsible for getting the kettle bell overhead with the American kettlebellswing. Not a great quality video at all, but the content is, I explain how to prevent the common back aches from the kettlebellswing, whether using the conventional/Russian or American swing.

The following is a drill I use for teaching the deep hip hinge insert which is what happens during the back swing and is also used to prevent bobbing of the kettle bell. If you want to be efficient with the American swing, stay safe, and be able to perform high reps then there is no doubt in my mind that you should lay the foundation with the conventional kettlebellswing and then continue that knowledge through the kettle bell snatch.

Taco Fleur Russian Gregory Sport Institute Kettle bell Coach, Caveman training Certified, IFF Certified Kettle bell Teacher, Kettle bell Sport Rank 2, HardstyleFit Kettle bell Level 1 Instructor., CrossFit Level 1 Trainer, CrossFit Judges Certificate, CrossFit Lesson Planning Certificate, Kettle bells Level 2 Trainer, Kettle bell Science and Application, MMA Fitness Level 2, MMA Conditioning Level 1, BJJ Purple Belt and more. The Russian kettle bell swing is a workout that targets many muscle groups in the body and can be performed simply with little equipment.

The Russian swing is a non-impact exercise, so it is excellent for those looking to lose weight without causing stress to their joints. This kettle bell exercise targets the abs, shoulders, pecs, glutes, quads, hips, hamstrings, and lats with a simple motion.

The Russian swing is designed to turn your body into a hinge with a kettle bell weight in your hands, your legs in a triangular stance to brace the movements, and your core engaged. The motion begins by engaging your glutes, quads, and hips; moving up through the core to the shoulders and pecs.

kettlebell swing form muscles handed swings worked benefits points teaching training
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While it may seem that the exercise is repetitive and unexciting, Russian swings will have you feeling the burn and gasping for breath by the end of your sets. Hold the kettle bell close to your groin in between your knees keeping your shoulders back and your core braced.

Keep a solid core and use your glutes and hamstrings to drive the kettle bell upward with the force of the hips. The kettle bell will stop in the air for a second and lower back into the starting stance between the knees, but close to the groin.

For an amazing cardio workout that burns fat and builds muscle, aim for high reps with low weight. You can also use a lightweight kettle bell and continuously perform reps within a time frame, then rest and repeat to reach your target heart rate and burn calories.

Russian Kettle bell swings can also be great for building muscle by performing using greater weight and fewer reps for an anaerobic workout. Use a medium or heavyweight for a short set of reps and see your muscle mass and endurance increase with each workout.

They will be there to help you create a routine and follow it, incorporating kettle bell swings in creative ways to help you reach your fitness goal.

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Sources
1 www.atemi-sports.com - https://www.atemi-sports.com/what-muscles-kettlebell-swings-work/
2 livehealthy.chron.com - https://livehealthy.chron.com/muscle-groups-kettlebell-swing-work-4495.html
3 www.cavemantraining.com - https://www.cavemantraining.com/kettlebells/muscles-worked-with-kettlebell-swings/
4 zerogravityfitness.net - https://zerogravityfitness.net/what-muscles-do-russian-kettlebell-swings-work/